Sahara group chairman Subrata Roy suffered a huge setback on Tuesday after the Supreme Court turned down his bail plea, slamming him for defying its orders and playing psychological games".
Challenging his illegal detention, Roy had alleged violation of his fundamental rights in keeping him in judicial custody since March 4, despite the fact that he was not a debtor in the case involving two of his firms. A bench of justices KS Radhakrishnan and JS Khehar said Roy's petition was not maintainable in law and that he deserved no relief in view of his persistent defiant and non-cooperative attitude over failure of his two companies to refund investors' money raised in an illegal bonds scheme.
Censuring the Sahara Group and Roy for repeatedly defying court orders and for calculated mind games to claim that his detention is illegal, it deprecated the group's mind games to nudge the judges recuse from hearing this petition and slammed it for disobedience of court orders.
Calculated psychological offensives and mind games adopted to seek recusal of judges need to be strongly repulsed. We deprecate such tactics and commend a similar approach to other courts, when they experience such behaviour, the judgment stated.
Judicial order cannot be circumvented and our orders are bound to be obeyed. We deprecate such approach. Our orders were repeatedly defied. The demeanour of the petitioner and his counsels displayed disregard for the court. So much judicial time was spent on this case.
While rejecting Sahara's latest proposal to pay in instalments the Rs 10,000 crore that has been set as a condition for his release, the court said that so far the facts it had shared appeared totally unrealistic and could well be fictitious, concocted and made up.
Roy, 65, was arrested on February 28 and has been in Tihar since March 4 after failing to appear for a contempt hearing in a long-running legal battle between the group and Sebi over the refund of money to around 3 crore investors.
The Sahara group however, expressed its inability in immediately paying Rs 10,000 crore for securing bail for Roy and its two directors, Ravi Shankar Dubey and Ashok Roy Choudhary.
The Sahara group had earlier also made a plea that Roy be released to facilitate negotiations with buyers for raising money to comply with the Supreme Court's order.
Efforts made to cajole the two firms and the petitioner were always stonewalled and brushed